• Cultural Bearer Allan Sumner during a burial ceremony at Kingston Park in Adelaide. (AAP)Source: AAP
The remains of 11 Kaurna old people have been buried in Adelaide's south west after being held in museums in the UK and South Australia.

The remains of six Kaurna old people that were held in the UK since the early 20th century have been buried in South Australia.

They were repatriated from London's Natural History Museum, arriving in Canberra this week, before being transported to their final resting place in Adelaide's south.

The remains of five other old people, which were being held at the South Australian museum, were also buried.

"We believe, as Kaurna people, that our ancestors need to be back home," said Traditional Owner Allan Sumner.

"We have many more other old people, and we are going to continue to put our people to rest," he said.

The head of humanities at the South Australian museum Professor John Carty said the graves of many Kaurna people were disturbed in the early-to-mid 20th century due to development.

"It's a museum, that's not the right place for people, so our work now is to take them out of the keeping place and getting them back to country where they belong," Professor Carty said.

In March, London's Natural History Museum returned the remains of 37 Indigenous people to Australia.

Among those remains, was Professor Peter Buckskin's ancestor, who was once buried on South Australia's Yorke Peninsula.

Professor Buckskin travelled to the UK in March to formally receive the remains, which he said was dug up during early copper mining exploration 100 years ago.

"He was stolen ... donated," he said in March.

"Imagine if that happened to a member of your family? Who finds skeletal remains and donates them?"

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It is believed thousands of Indigenous remains were taken from burial sites and hospitals before being exported overseas until the late 1940s for scientific purposes.

Some were displayed in museums around the world.

In Adelaide on Thursday, hundreds of people gathered to witness the reburial of 11 Kaurna old people who suffered a similar fate.

People of all ages and cultures lined up in a display of unity to pay their respects.

Jack Buckskin, who was helping them up a small mound near the burial site before hugging each of them, said: "Unfortunately, death brings people together."

"But something like this - which is an old death, bringing into a rebirthing - and seeing other people be a part of it is an awesome thing," he said.

Mr Buckskin said the repatriation of another set of Kaurna remains in August 2018 has inspired the community to act.

"It's starting to get traction and now there's other people that are now trying to get in on theirs as well," he said.


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Repatriation is just part of the story of stolen artefacts, writes Gemmia Burden from The University of Queensland.
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After 43 years, the remains of Australia's oldest human have finally returned to its ancestral homelands. The historic repatriation was celebrated in a cultural showcase of traditional song and dance.